Brian O’Driscoll will make his 150th appearance for Leinster when they take on Ulster in the Magners League semi-final on Friday night. He will partner Gordon D’Arcy in the centre, in a team that includes six Ireland internationals in the backline alone. Fergus McFadden, who kicked 18 points against Glasgow last weekend, starts on the right wing while scrum-half Isaac Boss is preferred to Eoin Reddan to partner Jonathan Sexton at 10.
Cian Healy will also reach a landmark this week as he will make his 50th appearance for the province, starting at loosehead alongside Richardt Strauss and Mike Ross.
Leinster team to face Ulster:
Isa Nacewa; Fergus McFadden, Brian O’Driscoll, Gordon D’Arcy, Luke Fitzgerald; Jonathan Sexton, Isaac Boss; Cian Healy, Richardt Strauss, Mike Ross, Leo Cullen (capt), Nathan Hines, Sean O’Brien, Shane Jennings, Jamie Heaslip.
Jason Harris-Wright, Heinke van der Merwe, Stan Wright, Devin Toner, Kevin McLaughlin, Eoin Reddan, Ian Madigan, David Kearney.
Brian McLaughlin has made just one change to the Ulster fifteen that beat the Dragons last week. Tim Barker comes into the second row to replace Dan Tuohy, who injured his hamstring at Rodney Parade, and will partner Johann Muller, who was named Heineken Ulster Personality of the Year this week. Neil McComb takes Barker’s place on the bench, while the side are also without back-rowers Stephen Ferris (knee) and Willie Faloon (shoulder).
Leinster have lost just once at the RDS since September 2008, in last season’s Grand Final against the Ospreys, while Ulster’s 34-26 loss at the RDS last month was their only defeat in nine league games.
Ulster team to face Leinster:
Adam D’Arcy; Craig Gilroy, Darren Cave, Nevin Spence, Simon Danielli; Ian Humphreys, Ruan Pienaar; Tom Court, Rory Best, Declan Fitzpatrick, Johann Muller, Tim Barker, Pedrie Wannenburg, Chris Henry, Robbie Diack.
Andy Kyriacou, Paddy McAllister, Jerry Cronin, Neil McComb, TJ Anderson, Paul Marshall, Ian Whitten, Conor Gaston.
Tickets are still on sale for Friday’s game, and will also be available to buy on the gate on the night. Prices start at €30 (adults) and €10 (children), while family tickets are available for €70 (family of four). Tickets are available from any Ticketmaster outlet, Spar, the Leinster rugby store in Donnybrook, or Champion Sports on Grafton Street. Or click here for more details.Like Rugby World? Subscribe to the magazine for the latest comprehensive content.
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